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Third overtime is a charm as Thunder beats Nets

Russell Westbrook had 38 points, 15 rebounds, nine assists and three steals, and forward Jeff Green added a career-high 37 points as the Thunder outlasted the New Jersey Nets 123-120 on Wednesday night at the Prudential Center.
By John Rohde, Staff Writer, jrohde@opubco.com Modified: December 2, 2010 at 8:48 pm •  Published: December 1, 2010

NEWARK, N.J. — The third time was still a charm for the Thunder without Kevin Durant.

Playing the third game this season without its All-Star forward, the Thunder pushed its mark to 3-0 and had to go to triple-overtime to do it.

Pending All-Star point guard Russell Westbrook had 38 points, 15 rebounds, nine assists and three steals, and forward Jeff Green added a career-high 37 points as the Thunder outlasted the New Jersey Nets 123-120 on Wednesday night at the Prudential Center.

The number three also proved to be a charm for Westbrook and Green during the game itself.

Westbrook scored all 13 points the Thunder had in the third overtime, going 5 for 7 from the field and 3 for 3 from the line. He also led the Thunder in rebounds (two) and steals (one) in the last extra period.

“I was struggling throughout the whole game,” Westbrook said. “I was missing easy shots, free throws. I honestly thought I wasn't playing well. I just tried to finish the game and get us a win.”

Meanwhile, Green had five three-point plays, converting 4 of 5 from 3-point range and three free throws with 4.6 seconds left in the second overtime to force the third extra period.

Green drew a three-shot foul on a 27-foot heave that nearly banked in — twice.

“They tried to foul before I got the shot up, but I was able to still go though his arms and get it up,” said Green, who finished 9 for 9 at the line. “It's very tough (hitting three straight free throws) … I tried to keep my composure.”

It was the first triple-overtime game in the careers of Westbrook and Green.

“And I'm glad to be 1-0,” Westbrook said.

Durant missed the game with a sprained left knee he suffered Monday night against New Orleans.

He is listed as day-to-day. The Thunder plays at Toronto on Friday.

“That's the target date,” Durant said of his hopeful return.

Wednesday's contest took three hours, 21 minutes to complete, had 19 lead changes and 13 ties.

"That's a lot of basketball," Thunder coach Scott Brooks said.

How many times did Brooks think his team had it won, and how many times did he think his team had lost?

“A lot, and a lot,” Brooks deadpanned. Thunder-Nets box score

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